Monthly Archives: June 2023

Delta Air Lines and El Al Israel Airlines to launch strategic partnership

Delta Air Lines and El Al Israel Airlines have signed an agreement to launch a strategic partnership that will offer more convenient connections for customers flying between the United States and Israel. The airlines will implement reciprocal codeshare and frequent flyer benefits, including the ability to earn and redeem miles across both carriers.

Initially, customers connecting onto Delta or El Al’s services will be able to check in for their entire journey, with boarding passes issued and bags checked through to their destination. Delta offers up to 200 same-day connections from Tel Aviv via its U.S. gateways Atlanta, Boston, and New York-JFK while El Al offers customers additional nonstop service to Tel Aviv from Boston and New York-JFK, alongside their Los Angeles, Miami, and Newark service.  In due course, both carriers will add their respective codes on each other’s operated flights.

EL AL Israel Airline

British Airways opens a call center in India

British Airways has officially opened ‘CallBA’, its new call centre located in Gurugram, near Delhi, offering an enhanced customer experience to travellers across the globe.

The airline’s Chairman and CEO, Sean Doyle, unveiled the new office space yesterday, where 1,400 highly trained colleagues offer round-the-clock support to thousands of customers from the US and Europe, through to Asia Pacific.

CallBA has doubled in size since 2019, and the new facility comfortably accommodates the full team, with colleagues now using a cloud-based telephone system with call-flow management and access to insightful data to further personalise the customer experience.

British Airways opens new call centre, for 1400 colleagues, based in Gurugram, near Delhi

The number of British Airways flights from Indiato London now exceeds pre-pandemic levels, with the airline operating 56 flights a week, to five Indian gateways: Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad.

British Airways is also proud to partner with IndusInd Bank and joint business partner, Qatar Airways, with the launch of a new multi-branded airline credit card. From July, card holders will be able to collect Avios and elevate their travel experience, with benefits ranging from fast-track to meet-and-greet and concierge services.

Indian customers travelling between Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore can enjoy the airline’s newly designed Club Suite (business class) cabin, with direct-aisle access, a suite door for greater privacy and luxurious flat-bed seats in a 1-2-1 configuration. Flyers will also soon start to see the new British Airways uniform, as cabin crew, pilots and check-in agents switch over to the airline’s first new uniform in 20 years.

Features of the newly launched CallBA 

  • British Airways has a long history of connecting the UK and India, and first flew to New Delhi in 1924. British Airways opened its first call centre in India in 2006.
  • The CallBA team also responds to customers using Live Chat through BA.com, this accounts for approximately 10% of customer contact and is growing.
  • CallBA’s new location is a LEED Gold and GRIHA 4 certified building and has been evaluated as a ‘green building’ from its construction stage to operations.
  • It boasts of an energy efficient double-glazed façade and beautiful green and open spaces throughout the building with ample natural light. There are over 10,000 plants all around the building, including in the car parks and offering staff green and natural surroundings and beautiful collaborative spaces.

JetBlue takes off to Paris CDG from New York JFK

JetBlue Airways on June 29 announced it has expanded its presence in the transatlantic market to continental Europe with new, nonstop service between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) taking off.

Paris is the largest market JetBlue did not already serve from New York and is among the most requested destinations from the airline’s customer base.

With daily flights connecting New York to Paris, the successful routes between the U.S. and London, and service to Amsterdam coming later this summer, JetBlue plays a unique role in disrupting high-fare legacy carriers that have dominated transatlantic routes for decades. Additionally, JetBlue plans to launch service between Boston and Paris in 2024.

Schedule between New York (JFK) and Paris (CDG)

Daily service starting June 29, 2023 (Eastbound) & June 30 (Westbound) 
*all times local
JFK – CDG Flight #1407CDG – JFK Flight #1408
5:09 p.m. – 6:55 a.m. (+1)8:55 a.m. – 11:51 a.m.

Flights will operate daily on JetBlue’s Airbus A321 Long Range (LR) aircraft with 24 redesigned Mint Suite® seats, 114 core seats and the sleek and spacious Airspace cabin interior. The A321 – offering the range of a wide-body but with the economics of a single-aisle aircraft — will allow JetBlue to effectively disrupt the market with the airline’s award-winning service and low fares on flights between the U.S. and Paris.

JetBlue will operate from Terminal 2B.

British Airways and London Heathrow Airport partner with London Wildlife Trust to help protect Hillingdon’s wildlife

  • New conservation and outreach project funded by British Airways and Heathrow will protect and enhance five nature reserves and two country parks in west London  
  • The investment is London Wildlife Trust’s largest corporate partnership to date and will fund ‘Connecting with Nature in Hillingdon’, a project which aims to deliver improvements to vital natural habitats
  • Working closely with Hillingdon Council, the project will also support volunteering and community engagement activities across the seven sites

British Airways and Heathrow have announced a new partnership with London Wildlife Trust to help protect local wildlife and ensure Hillingdon residents are able to enjoy the abundance of wildlife that surrounds them.

British Airways and Heathrow are jointly investing in the project, called ‘Connecting with Nature in Hillingdon’, which will help protect and enhance seven nature reserves and country parks in the Hillingdon area. They include Minet Country Park, Cranford Country Park, Huckerby’s Meadows, Yeading Brook Meadows, Ten Acre Wood, Gutteridge Woods, and Ickenham Marsh.

The project will also create volunteering opportunities in the community and build on the great work Hillingdon Council and the Trust are doing to ensure all corners of the community can access and enjoy the green spaces in their local area.

Hillingdon has many natural gems where residents and visitors can discover the likes of kingfishers and kestrels along the green lifeline of the Yeading Brook and Crane River.

Conservation work will be delivered with the expertise of London Wildlife Trust and include cattle grazing, path and fence maintenance, habitat restoration and new planting, as well as wildlife surveying.

To monitor progress, a ranger will be recruited to work closely with volunteers to look after the sites, and recruitment for these opportunities will open shortly. Regular events including guided walks and outdoor learning will also be organised, to help reconnect residents.

Austrian Airlines welcomes its fourth Airbus A320neo

Austrian Airlines made this announcement:

Our A320neo family is complete.

Yesterday evening, we have completed the induction of our fourth Airbus A320neo (OE-LZP).

The fourth aircraft with the name “Kalkalpen” arrived in its new home Vienna and was warmly welcomed by our colleagues with flags and banners.

SWAPA requests release from the National Mediation Board (NMB)

The Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA) on June 29 filed a request with the National Mediation Board (NMB) to be officially released from mediation.

SWAPA and Southwest have been in negotiations for a new contract for more than three years and in federal mediation since September 2022. SWAPA negotiators have become increasingly frustrated with Southwest’s lack of commitment to negotiating in earnest and the pace of productivity during this negotiation cycle.

“If released from mediation, our Pilot group will continue down the path afforded to us through the Railway Labor Act (RLA),” said SWAPA President Casey Murray. “It is an unfortunate situation that we find ourselves in today, however, our pilots have waited long enough for a contract. We can no longer sit by as our fellow aviators are rewarded with industry leading contracts and watch as we bleed qualified new hires to our competitors. We love our airline, and we are willing to do what it takes to get Southwest back to the airline it once was.” 

In light of this request, our pilots hope that Southwest’s negotiators will make a stronger commitment and more meaningful preparations in order to expedite a long-overdue contract that rewards the most productive 737 pilots in the industry.

Southwest Airlines extends its flight schedule through March 6, 2024 with new seasonal service

Southwest Airlines extended its flight schedule today through March 6, 2024, enabling Customers to book their early 2024 getaways.

Southwest® also announced today it is adding new seasonal nonstop service. Beginning Jan. 13, 2024, Southwest will offer service on Saturdays between Omaha, Neb., and Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fla.

Seasonal Service Returns for Late Winter Travel 

Southwest will also resume several seasonal routes beginning as early as Jan. 8, 2024, bringing convenient flights for Customers to take a break from winter weather.

Southwest will resume daily service beginning Jan. 8, 2024, between Dallas and Fort Myers, Fla. and between Dallas and Palm Springs, Calif. A few days later, on Jan. 14, 2024, Southwest will resume flights on Sundays between Dallas and Louisville, Ky.

The airline will also bring back routes linking cities across the United States to many Florida destinations. Customers can now book seasonal weekend service beginning on Sat., Jan. 13, 2024, between:

Albany, N.Y.   and Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fla.  
Phoenix        and Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fla. 
Buffalo, N.Y.  and   Fort Myers, Fla.
Louisville, Ky.  and   Fort Myers, Fla
Providence, R.I.  and Fort Myers, Fla.
Cleveland          and  Tampa, Fla.  
Cincinnati      and Orlando, Fla. 
Detroit            and    Orlando, Fla. 
Minneapolis/St. Paul andOrlando, Fla. (offered Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, Weekends)

Beginning on the same day, the airline will offer weekly service on Saturdays between:

Hartford, Connand Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fla.   
Grand Rapids, Michand Fort Myers, Fla
Washington, D.C. (Reagan National) and Fort Myers, Fla. 
Minneapolis/St. Paul and Tampa, Fla.

On Jan. 14, 2024, the airline will offer nonstop service on Sundays between Louisville, Ky., and Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fla.

Copa Airlines celebrates inaugural flight from Baltimore to Panama City, Panama on June 28

Copa Airlines marked a milestone on June 28 as it launched its nonstop service to Baltimore, Maryland. This addition expands Copa Airlines’ presence to a total of 14 cities in the United States, further solidifying its commitment to providing seamless connectivity between North, Central, South America and the Caribbean. The new route establishes an important link between Baltimore and Copa Airlines’ extensive network of routes across Latin America, facilitated by its Hub of the Americas® located at Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport.

The inaugural flight received a warm welcome as it touched down at BWI Marshall Airport, greeted by a ceremonial water cannon salute. The occasion was commemorated with a series of memorable events, including a ribbon-cutting ceremony, a meticulously crafted commemorative cake, and performances by talented Panamanian dancers. Esteemed executives from both Copa Airlines and BWI Marshall Airport delivered speeches, underscoring the significance of this occasion.

Boasting a rich historical legacy, a thriving art scene, and a wealth of economic prospects, Baltimore emerges as an enticing destination for both leisure seekers and business travelers alike. Its strategic proximity to Washington D.C. and its neighboring cities positions it as an ideal gateway for those seeking to explore the wider region.

Copa Airlines now offers four (4) weekly flights on Mondays, Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, the flights depart Panama at 9:07 a.m. (local time) and arrive at the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) at 3:07 p.m. (local time). The return flight will operate on the same days, departing Baltimore at 4:22 p.m. (local time) and arriving back in Panama at 8:22 p.m. (local time).  

Teamsters call for imminent strike against UPS as negotiations stall

The Teamsters issued this statement:

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters walked away from the national bargaining table and officially demanded UPS exchange its last, best, and final offer no later than June 30.

The Teamsters gave UPS a one-week notice on Tuesday to act responsibly and exchange a stronger economic proposal for more than 340,000 full- and part-time workers. UPS executives couldn’t make it one more day without insulting and ignoring union leaders and rank-and-filers as negotiations resumed on Wednesday.

Despite the Teamsters having reached consensus on 55 non-economic issues with the company on June 19, UPS has continued to seek a cost-neutral contract during economic negotiations. The world’s largest delivery company that raked in more than $100 billion in revenue last year has made it clear to its union workforce that it has no desire to reward or respectfully compensate UPS Teamsters for their labor and sacrifice. During the past week, UPS returned an appalling counterproposal to the union’s financial package, offering miniscule raises and wage cuts to traditional cost-of-living adjustments.

“The largest single-employer strike in American history now appears inevitable,” said Teamsters General President Sean M. O’Brien. “Executives at UPS, some of whom get tens of millions of dollars a year, do not care about the hundreds of thousands of American workers who make this company run. They don’t care about our members’ families. UPS doesn’t want to pay up. Their actions and insults at the bargaining table have proven they are just another corporation that wants to keep all the money at the top. Working people who bust their asses every single day do not matter, not to UPS.”

With a deadline of Friday to return a last, best, and final offer, UPS risks putting itself on strike by August 1 and causing devastating disruptions to the supply chain in the U.S. and other parts of the world. Teamsters nationwide overwhelmingly authorized a strike this month by 97 percent should UPS fail to come to terms on a new contract. UPS’s impending failure is one step closer to reality and has the potential to affect nearly all Americans.

The Teamsters met with UPS negotiators late into Tuesday night over Article 34 of the union’s National Master Agreement, governing health and welfare and pension benefits for members. Despite early progress, UPS attempted to move the goalposts at the 11th hour and withhold any additional benefits from the Teamsters, seeking concessionary language instead.

When the Teamsters walked away from the table, UPS agreed to resume negotiations on Wednesday. When corporate executives showed up, they only resubmitted the same proposal for worker concessions under Article 34.